FYP II: Critical Writing and Research

FYP1004.12 (10:45-12:00PM)

FYP1004.17 (12:10-1:25PM)

Spring 2017   

Instructor: Ms. LaPadura


Location: Brownson Wing Room 1

 Office Hours: T (9:00-10:30AM) F (2:00PM-3:30PM)

Course Description: All students in this class completed FYP I, and are familiar with reflective, argumentative, and comparative analysis writing. Through critically thinking about social, political, and economic issues located online and offline, students mastered purposeful communication to an intended audience by utilizing various textual sources. The second semester of FYP entails completing Manhattanville College’s freshman essay, a standard requirement for all first-year students. As a part of this course, you will construct a proposal, annotated bibliography, group-led lesson, researched essay, solo round-table discussion on a topic of your choice. Each of these tasks incorporates individual/collaborative pre-search, demonstration of proficiency in critical thinking and problem-solving, and an application of digital literacies relevant to today’s society.


Investigating inherent, ideological constructs presented in photographs on social media sites allowed us to develop a contextual awareness for myriads of problems. From here, we opened avenues for thorough analysis that you may, or may not, venture further into during this semester. The first portion of the semester is devoted to investigating, critiquing, and understanding the Academic Research Writing genre. For the remainder, you’ll join with like-minded classmates in a themed research group. Your group will serve as allies in brainstorming, peer-reviewing, and revising your individual essays both in-class and on your blogs.



  • A NB or another device to take notes in class lectures or for homework assignments
  • First-Year Writing Class Blog: as well as personal blog
  • Access to a reliable printer and/or a copy card for printing readings, research, and drafts- be sure to have a secondary source to save your work to. Reliable examples: Google Drive, One Drive (as per your Mville email account), an external flash drive)
  • All texts for this class will be provided for you- you do NOT have to purchase texts from the bookstore to complete any of these assignments.


Coursework and Grading:  Projects will be assessed using our hierarchy of rhetoric concerns. In terms of process work, post the Research Rationale, all work done in class, and for homework, is considered process work building up to your final draft of the freshmen essay.


Writing Projects

Research Rationale 10% Due: 02/10/2017
Annotation Project Annotated Bibliography: 15%

Annotation Lesson: 5%

AB: 03/10/2017

AL: 2/14, 2/17, 2/21, 2/24 and 2/28

Presentation dates are determined by class sign-ups

Freshmen Essay 50% Due: 04/28/2017
Final Projects 10% TBD In class


Process Work and Blogging 10% Cumulative



Course Grading Scale:


A = 95%-100% C+ = 76%-80%
A- = 90%- 94% C = 70%-75%
B+ = 87%-89% D = 64%- 69%
B = 84%-86% F = 0%-63%
B- = 81%-83%

*Note that absences can override satisfactory completion of coursework. See the attendance policy below.

**Any changes to the value of assignments will be announced in class. Instructor reserves the right to make changes to assignments based on the needs of the class.



Course Requirements/Policies:


  1. Attendance: As much of our work will be collaborative, it is imperative to your group, as well as your own success, to be punctual and prepared. Showing-up to class unprepared for group work will always result in a dismissal and an absence. Students who miss a class, or are dismissed from class, will be expected to get notes, assignments, and other information from fellow classmates, and they should contact me for any unresolved questions. You get three “freebies” over the course of the semester; 3% per additional absence will be deducted from your final course grade. Please know that despite the professorial position, I do understand that life gets in the way. If you’re struggling with attendance or assignments, I encourage you to email me, talk to me after class, or come to my office hours.


  1. Email Etiquette: Completing your first semester of college makes you aware of how large a role email plays in your life. To help you avoid the same pitfalls I suffered with email during my college years, I’m going to require you to email me in a certain format. First, emails must have a salutation (Hi, Dear, Hello, Hey etc.) are acceptable. Follow with the name the person uses during in-person interaction. Emails must end with a sign-off (Thanks, Sincerely, Best, From etc.) are acceptable. I recommend using an email signature. If you need help setting this up, please let me know. Avoid using profanity and check your spelling before sending. You can drop the salutation when a thread begins (we send email back and forth more than once) Threads are restarted on a day to day basis. New day, new thread. You had all of first semester to practice. Starting this semester, I will not respond to emails without these requirements.


  1. Assignment Due Dates and Late Work:You are responsible for knowing what assignments are due, when they are due, what assignments you may have missed, and what in-class handouts you need to obtain.  Due dates will be posted on our blog and will also be announced in class. I will not accept papers that are turned in after the due date. To avoid these kinds of issues, save your work in multiple places to alleviate the stress of computer failure. Trust me, I’ve been there, some of you have too, and it isn’t fun.


  1. Personal Class Blog: Last semester, you created a blog through the web-platform WordPress to catalog your thoughts throughout the year. Our blogging requirements will be a little different this semester due to your research groups. For the first few weeks, we’ll utilize our traditional rules of posts being 350-500 words and due at the stated date and time unless otherwise specified. It’s important to adhere to the blogging instructions as both I, and your classmates, will need to respond to your blog posts. An important part of utilizing a blog is to create conversation, so if your post is not present for I or your classmates to comment on, you will receive 0 credit for that assignment. Blogs will still be graded on our three-point scale.


  1. Workshop Policy: Workshops are critical opportunities to give and receive feedback on major assignments for the course. While we will have in-class workshops during the semester for your major projects, much of this class will involve workshopping with your research group. Because these are so frequent, the two-absence penalty will not be applied, but showing up unprepared to any group work, as previously stated, will result in a dismissal and an absence.


  1. Class Conduct:Civility and respect are mandatory in this class. There may be in-class discussions and/or debates that may broach sensitive, controversial issues, so it is necessary that civility and respect be employed at all times. I reserve the right to dismiss any students who disrupt class. Disruption includes, but is not limited to, the following: lack of respect and civility during class discussion, engaging in distracting behavior and/or conversation with neighbors, arriving late, and being unprepared for class discussion and activities. As per the rules established in the previous semester, you will receive one warning for any kind of disruption. If I must reprimand you more than once, you will be dismissed from class. (Your chosen, and quite effective, policy).


  1. Class Communication:For this class, all the information concerning HW assignments, project due dates, and course documents will be located on our class blog: Therefore, familiarize yourself with this communication tool. All other information will be communicated via email, so be sure to check that regularly.


  1. Academic Honesty:Academic dishonesty is a serious form of misconduct in an educational community. It threatens the relationship of trust that must exist among members of that community. As such, it warrants the most serious of responses, including possible expulsion from the College. It is each student’s responsibility to become familiar with the information presented below as well as with related procedures and sanctions. In cases where academic dishonesty is suspected, both faculty members and students have an obligation to bring the matter to the attention of the Director of the College Writing Program for appropriate action.


  1. Accommodations:Please let me know of individual needs during the first week of classes. Students with disabilities who believe they may need accommodations in this class are encouraged to contact Resources for Disability Services at (914)323-7127 as soon as possible to ensure accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion.